Discussion of 3 ISDS cases. Services under attack.

Veolia vs Egypt: Investors against minimum wage
In 2012, French company Veolia Propreté filed an ICSID claim against Egypt over an alleged violation of a concession contract to provide waste management services in the port city of Alexandria.

The city refused to agree to contract changes Veolia had requested to compensate for increasing costs. One of the causes driving Veolia’s costs was the government’s decision to introduce new labour legislation increasing the minimum wage. The case has been filed under the BIT between France and Egypt.170

Achmea vs Slovakia: Investors against public health insurance

In December 2012, the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in The Hague ruled that Slovakia had to pay €22 million plus interest and legal fees to Dutch health insurer Achmea for a violation of the BIT between the Netherlands and the Slovak Republic. Achmea filed its claim in reaction to a law passed by the Slovak government in 2006 banning private health insurers from retaining profits or distributing them to their shareholders.171

While Slovakia continues to fight the PCA ruling, Achmea achieved another verdict by a Luxembourg
court in 2013 ordering the seizure of €29.5 million of Slovakian government assets invested in Luxembourg.172


Eureko vs Poland: Investors fighting for privatisation
In 1999, Poland allowed Dutch health insurer Eureko to acquire 30 percent of the shares of PZU, the Polish
insurance company operating large parts of the mandatory health insurance and pension system, which until then had been 100 percent state-owned. In 2001, the government committed itself to floating further PZU shares which would have allowed Eureko to acquire a controlling stake. But as the planned flotation was later cancelled, Eureko initiated arbitration proceedings claiming breaches of the BIT between Poland and the Netherlands and demanding hefty compensations of about €2 billion. After winning two awards, Eureko reached a settlement with Poland in 2009 requiring PZU to pay a special dividend of €1.8 billion to Eureko.173